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by Barbara Sheridan
Leslie Tramposch: Managing Editor - Sara Reyes: Marketing and Publicity
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1st Anniversary Issue ~ February 2001

Collaborations ~ When two heads are even better than one!

PNR Poll: We Want More............Romance!


Christine Holden

Christine Holden comprises the duo Leslie-Christine Megahey and Shirley-Holden Ferdinand, a mother-daughter writing team who has been working together since 1991. Shirley has been writing since she was 16, and Leslie "penned" her first book at the age of 4, a school project
that still sits proudly on the shelf at home.

After growing up watching her mother create fantastic characters, Leslie asked Shirley to write anAntebellum story that Leslie had thought of because of her fascination and love of the architecture of the old houses. Shirley agreed after Leslie promised to do all the researching, typing, corrections, and chapter editions on the novel, and Christine Holden was born.

Leslie has been a member of RWA since 1993. She also served as Vice President of the Southern Louisiana chapter, of which she is now a member. Now, 9 years later, they're finally realizing their dreams.


An Interview with Christine Holden

PNR: You ladies are a mother and daughter team. Have either or you written individually?

Christine H: We've written individually, but nothing that was ever published.

PNR: How was the collaboration formed and how does it work? Do you brainstorm? Take individual aspects and work on them separately?

Christine H: Leslie became ill and was told by her doctors that holding down a
regular job would be a major difficulty. So with Shirley's help, we tried writing. At this point, we brainstorm the storyline, then Shirley writes the entire story in longhand. Leslie types it, adding her chapters, descriptions, and research in the process. From there, we criticize and edit.

PNR: Do you find it easier or more difficult to be critical of each others ideas, being related?

Christine H: It's more difficult to be critical of one another's work when there's a certain scene or chapter that one of us has written and we're determined to keep it in the book. In situations like that, arguments ensue from any criticisms. In the end, however, our disagreements somehow strengthen the plots.

PNR: You’ve written four books for Berkley/Jove. Three paranormals and a novel for the Quilting Romance line. Would you say these two elements are a reflection of your personal interests?

Christine H: We love to read and write historicals and time travels, but we'd had a very difficult time selling any, so when tge Berkley/Jove's Quilting Romance line came about, our former agent suggested we do a proposal for the line to try to break into the industry. That was in May of 1997. We sold PATTERNS OF LOVE five months later in October. So, in actuality, our first sale came about because we wrote what was being accepted at that time.

PNR: Your paranormal romances are set in New Orleans at one point or other (past or present). Aside from it being your home town are there other reasons for setting the stories there?

Christine H: Aside from our love affair with our city and its history, we know it and that makes a New Orleans setting a lot easier to write about, although our January 2002 release will be set in Regency England.

PNR: You heard it here folks <g>. New Orleans has quite a history that makes it a favorite setting among paranormal enthusiasts, ghosts, vampires, voodoo and witches. You’ve added time travel to the mix. In your first time travel, “A Time for Us” a woman from medieval England travels forward to the new Orleans of our time. In your latest time travel “A Hitch in Time” the hero travels from the present to pre Civil War New Orleans to confront his history and learn something about his present relationships in the process. Time traveling in either direction tends to place characters in unfamiliar circumstances. Which did you think was easier to write?

Christine H: In these two cases, because both characters have ties to New Orleans, it is a tie. We debated how Ailith, a maiden from the 14th century would react to living in the 20th century. While we wrote about the time we live in, we had to factor in a completely different set of values and culture. Likewise, we considered how we would feel in Drew's case. How would we, creatures of comfort and 21st century technology, react to living in a time where disease, death, decorum, and duels were a daily part of life? However, to us, having a time-traveler go from past to present is definitely easier, simply because we live in the here and now.

PNR: Staying on those lines, the hero of “Hitch in Time”, Drew. has some real problems. Aside from the fact that he has a stormy relationship with his father, and has left a small and beloved daughter behind in the present, what other dilemmas does he face?

Christine H: First and foremost in A Hitch In Time, is Drew's dilemma of having been thrown back in time and not knowing if he'll ever return to his own time. He has to be diligent of a jealousy crazed ancestor, who's bound and determined to kill him. He has to overcome a bout with Yellow Fever. He further complicates his life by falling madly in love with a Creole beauty who's engaged to his ancestor. It seems impossible with all these obstacles facing him that he'll ever breach the time barrier again or end up with the woman he loves.

PNR: Okay, Drew falls in love with a woman in the past. How does he deal with the conflict of emotions, needing to be with his child and needing to be with this woman?

Christine H: Drew deals with his conflict by deciding to take his life one day at a time. While he searches for a way back to Teal, he realizes that he must think of her in a different perspective. In this case, relegating her to a corner of his mind is the proper perspective so he can accept his breach of time and live in the past until he finds his corridor back to the future.

PNR: Marianne (the heroine) has conflicts as well. Tell us a bit about them.

Christine H: Because her family is in jeopardy of losing their plantation, Marianne consents to marry Rafe Montague, Drew's great-great-grandfather. It's a business arrangement that Marianne wants out of even before she meets and falls in love with Drew. Marianne resents the burden of responsibility her mother has placed on her and contemplates running away to Paris. But her family loyalty prevent her from taking that route.

PNR: The “villain” of the piece, Rafe Montague, is a direct ancestor of Drew’s and also his main rival for Marianne’s affection. How is Drew affected by this conflict of interest? After all any major action taken against Rafe would affect his own existence.

Christine H: Because the villain is Drew's great-great-grandfather and his main rival for Marianne's affection, Drew carefully considers every move he makes. He knows that one wrong turn would jeopardize his own existence and that of the family he left in the future.

PNR: Drew knows how history unfolds in his own time. Is he ever concerned that his own actions or presence in the past could affect the outcome he is familiar with?

Christine H: Yes, but he tries to stay as neutral as possible so as not to upset history's course.

PNR: Back to New Orleans which is as we said rich in history. Drew is obviously uncomfortable with the some aspects of the past, slavery for instance. How did he deal with that?

Christine H: It was the strictures of the time he was in. He accepted the slavery issue with the knowledge that it would be abolished, while according his own values to those that he did meet.

PNR: There is more to this story than simple time travel. A little magic perhaps? What is the history behind the time travel mechanism in this story?

Christine H: Laurinda magically enhanced the watch to catapult Andrew back in time. She wanted him to learn a valuable lesson in humility.

PNR: Speaking of magic, I don’t want to leave out your Magical Love title, Bedazzled. This is a contemporary paranormal in which the heroine has a problem controlling her spending. She had developed a tendre’ for her big brother’s best friend, who due to life’s circumstances is a bit of a miser. She is trying desperately to reform but a rather expensive (and ugly) antique bowl calls out to her. Both gentlemen catch her with the purchase, no?

Christine H: Yes, and she's mortified that she's been caught in a digression, especially by Jordan Bennett, the man she'd been in love with for years.

PNR: Of course the bowl, who likes to be called Elvis, has magical properties <g> which ultimately brings the two together through compromise. Paranormal romance in itself has it’ peaks and lows. While some publishers have added to their paranormal lines, other’s such a Berkley are currently experiencing a decline. Have you any plans to write additional paranormal romances in the future or will you be looking for new directions for your writing? What is next for Christine Holden?

Christine H: We'd certainly like a chance to write another paranormal and have two additional paranormals–a ghost romance and another time travel–at a publishing house. However, DEAREST BELOVED is our next release. It's set in Regency England. It'll be out in January 2002 and is part of Berkley/Jove's Love Letter line.

 

 

 

 

 


Christine Holden
Shirley and Leslie

Website NA

 Books


Time Travel Romance

A HITCH IN TIME


Buy it now!

Jove
October 3, 2000
336 pages
ISBN: 0515129283


New Orleans, 2000, Law student Drew Montague faces a dilemma: his parents, who have been helping him financially, want him to forego school in favor of learning the family business -- a prospect he has avoided all his life. As Drew wanders and ponders his troubles one balmy evening, he comes across an old pocket watch hanging from a hitching post, and is reminded of a childhood rhyme. Suddenly the world starts spinning ...

New Orleans, 1853. Marianne Beaufort is on the brink of betrothal to a man she despises. On the evening her engagement is to be announced, she meets a confused, oddly dressed, but very handsome young man who claims to be from the future -- stranger still, he recognizes her beau as his great-great-grandfather! Marianne knows she should avoid Drew, whose appearance has already complicated her life. But she cannot help being drawn to this stranger who can predict the future, yet seems so lost in the present...


A TIME FOR US


Buy it now!

Jove
September 1998
353 pages
ISBN: 0515123757


Fantasy Romance

BEDAZZLED


Buy it now!

Jove
March 2000
320 pages
ISBN: 0515127744

Historical Romance


Buy it now!

Jove
April 1999

320 pages

ISBN: 0515124818

Coming in October 2001!

Jove
October 31, 2001
ISBN: 0515132284
352 pages

 

 

Featured in this Issue:

Interviews with:
J.M Jeffries
Christine Holden
Elizabeth Keys
One Year Later
!
Barbara Sheridan

Romance News:
Sandra Dugas and John DeSalvo present:
Fan Appreciation

Media News

All book synopsises are copyrighted to the authors/publishers.


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